Maximizing Communication Methods to Promote Student Development and Success

Mollie Hartup, MBA, is Instructor in the Honors College, Coordinator of Communications, and YSU Magazine editor at Youngstown State University. She is currently pursuing a PhD in Communication and Information with a focus on organizational communication at Kent State University. She has prior professional experience in television news and print journalism. Amy Cossentino, PhD, is Dean, Honors College, Youngstown State University. She has nearly 30 years of experience in higher education and currently also teaches in the Honors College and the Beeghly College of Education at YSU. Together, they have combined their interests and expertise in communication and education to develop a debriefing framework for schools and organizations to leverage shared experiences such as professional conferences. They are actively using and testing this framework in practice. Continue reading Maximizing Communication Methods to Promote Student Development and Success

Moving Students Away from Teacher-Centric Writing to Reader-Centric Business Communication

A research project I’m currently working on examines how new employees, mostly recent college grads, learn to write within an organization. One of my interview questions is, “Are you a different writer today than you were when you first joined the organization?” And the answer is usually, with few exceptions, yes. And many interviewees then tell a story about learning to write at their organization that goes something like this: when they first started, they would write e-mails comprised of long sentences–and even longer paragraphs–, multiple paragraphs of text without any guideposts for reading, and lots of general information targeted at no specific audience. They quickly realized, however, that their reader (a boss, a client) didn’t want all of that—instead, the reader wanted something short and to the point. Continue reading Moving Students Away from Teacher-Centric Writing to Reader-Centric Business Communication

Q&A on Bad News

The students in this pre-business class are immersed in a progressive scenario throughout the semester. The written assignments ask them to build on what they learn very thoughtfully and develop skills sequentially. The idea is to introduce concepts through mastery. I developed this activity when I noticed that students were having difficulty truly embodying the character and voice of their role in the scenario. I imagined that the personal and immediate nature of non-verbal feedback in a verbal exchange could be transferred to benefit the students’ written strategic messaging and tone. Continue reading Q&A on Bad News